How do you know if you need to change your coolant?

April 30th, 2018 by

How to check engine coolant in Volkswagen
When it comes to fluids, coolant can be a confusing thing for those who aren’t familiar with automotive maintenance. After all, we tend to call it coolant in the summer, and then antifreeze in the winter. It’s true: They are the same thing. The difference is that the liquid you associate with preventing your engine from overheating on the dog days of summer likewise prevents your engine from seizing up when things get a bit chilly outside. Except here in California, we don’t normally experience temperatures that would have us consider this. Without major seasonal changes, maintenance is often something we have to schedule in order to remember. Today we’re talking about how to know when your engine coolant needs to be changed and how to check it.

Never drive with the engine coolant lamp on
You might not think about your engine fluids every time you start your car, but they all exist for a reason. When you see the coolant light turn on, it means your system isn’t working or there isn’t enough fluid. You should pull over immediately if the light, which is red and looks like a thermometer with waves underneath it. If your engine overheats, it could cause permanent damage and become inoperable, so it’s a very serious matter to prevent it from seizing.

So how do you check your engine coolant?

When your vehicle is cool, locate the coolant tank, which is opaque white with a blue top featuring the coolant warning symbol. The fluid inside should be pink.
Unscrew the cap to see the fluid levels.
Use genuine Volkswagen coolant to fill up to the max fill line, if necessary.
Replace the coolant cap.

We can’t stress enough that you should not drive your vehicle if the warning light comes on. Likewise, if you remove the cap when the vehicle is hot, it could spray high-temperature cooler as the tank is under pressure.

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If you continue having issues with coolant levels, it’s time to bring your vehicle to our service department to check for leaks. Do you have other maintenance questions? Leave us a comment here at the New Century Volkswagen Blog.